Tuesday, October 8, 2013

TSW?T: So Close, Yet So Far

They Said What? Tuesday:  Volume 23

My 3-year-old daughter...

"Is Grandma going to Skittle-ly next?"
...Her question after I told her Grandma had landed safely in France.  We talked about the different places Grandma was going on her trip to Europe when the kids made her a poster before she left.  To my daughter's credit, Skittle-ly sounds even better than Italy!  

My 5-year-old son...

"Can we have those donuts from Bob Evans?"
...I have no idea if Bob Evans even has donuts.  Maybe they do.  If they do, we've never, ever had them there.  What he meant by 'Bob Evans' was 'Robinette's,' which may actually make the best donuts on the face of the planet.

No matter what they say, You Are a Good Mom.


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Sunday, October 6, 2013

"Parent"dox: When Your Baby Sister is All Grown Up

Sunday Night "Parent"dox #26:  When Your Baby Sister is All Grown Up

Tomorrow is my baby sister's birthday, which makes tonight her "Birthday Eve."  

Tonight, we celebrated her birthday at her house eating pizza, cupcakes and decorating pumpkins.

While we were driving home, it hit me in very strange way...my baby sister is all grown up.  

We were at her house, with her and her husband, with a yummy dinner and fun activities for my kids to do while we there, and her adorable, sweet daughter smiling and being cuddled through all of it.

She is all grown up.  I don't know exactly when it happened, but it happened.  She is all grown up.  And even though my 13-year-old self would never, ever believe I'd ever be saying this, she turned out pretty awesome.  

For her birthday, I'm sharing the speech I gave at her wedding reception just under 3 years ago.  

Happy Birthday, Baby Sis!  I love you!! ****************************************************************************************
What an amazing day for two amazing people!  The reception looks amazing, and the ceremony was beautiful.  Now you know, Katie, Brian has had to listen to you and agree with you a lot during this whole wedding planning process.  So don't worry if Brian doesn't listen to you or agree with you after today...you do realize that you are allowed to have 15 more husbands. I even heard Father Andy say so at the ceremony today. Remember? FOUR better, FOUR worse, FOUR richer, and FOUR poorer!!  (Although I do think he is THE BEST and only ONE you will ever need!

It’s hard to believe my “little sister’s” wedding day is here!  Growing up, I think we disagreed just that one time...or maybe more than once...I don't exactly remember, but I do remember both Mom and Dad telling us "You only have one sister.  You better work it out.  Someday, she will be your best friend!"  I remember rolling my eyes and mumbling lots of things under my breath more than once about that mantra as it was drilled into our heads.  I also remember thinking "I only have one sister....THANK GOD!" on more than one occasion.  

And it started early!  Like when you were born, and came home from the hospital and I asked if you could spend the night at our house…then asked the very next day if Mom and Dad could PLEASE take you back now.  And I thought THANK GOD I only have one sister when we were playing catch in the basement, and instead of catching the ball, you decided to duck, and the softball shattered the window.  And I thought THANK GOD I only have one sister when we attacked each other with markers, covering each other from head to toe, in the battle that came to be know in our house simply as “Marker Wars.” 

And I hate to say it, but this has to be music to Mom and Dad's ears:  You were right.....YES, MOM AND DAD, YOU…WERE…RIGHT, My little sister has indeed become my best friend.  A lot has changed in the 28 years we've spent together, but my thought is still the same...THANK GOD I have one sister.  I THANK GOD for giving me the gift of a sister and best friend.  

Someone who is smart, hilarious, beautiful, both inside and out, who will laugh with me, cry with me, listen to me, tell me the truth, not just what I want to hear, and be there for me for always.  THANK GOD I have a sister who is the one person who has truly gone through life with me, the ups and the downs, and understands things about who I am and why I am a little bit crazy, in a way no one else can.  THANK GOD I have a sister who knows what I am thinking without exchanging words, just exchanging a glance.  THANK GOD I have a sister to call, or who can call me, when no one else understands what's going on.  THANK GOD I have a sister who let me (well, I guess "let me" is a relative term...) boss her around teaching her dances and making her do "shows", a sister who will help wrap a Christmas gift at 2am by throwing it in a box with a blanket and brick, a sister who will create masterpieces out of Triscuits and Easy Cheese.  And now seeing my children begin to play with each other, interact with each other, and love each other, I THANK GOD even more I had a sister and I realize a relationship with a sibling is not one to be taken for granted.

Today, I THANK GOD again, but this time for the amazing man He has chosen as my "little sister's" husband.  Brian, welcome to our crazy family, and good luck. From the time you and Katie started dating...again...I think we have ALL been hoping and praying this day would come! (And it actually arrived a week sooner than we originally thought...even better.)

You are a man of character and integrity, and you get my sister (yup, after today she's all yours....)  No, really, you GET my sister, and it warms my heart to know she is marrying a man who sees her and loves her for who she really is.  She is so happy, and is completely and totally herself, when she is with you.  She has a twinkle in her eye, a bounce in her step, and genuine happiness in her laugh since you came into her life.   I also THANK GOD for the incredible family Katie is joining today.  They are an amazing family, who are caring, hilarious and will keep a good eye on her.  They have been nothing but welcoming to her and our entire family.  It truly feels like today is a union of not just two people, but two families. 

Katie, I haven't told you nearly enough, but I have always looked up to you.  I know I'm the big sister, and I was the one who was supposed to be "teaching you things" but I feel like I have learned far more from you than I ever taught you.  I have always been amazed by your ability to make the best of any situation, your ability to put other people at ease, your ability to go with the flow, and your incredible talent to make people laugh.  You speak your mind and say the things that need to be said, and you do it with humor and grace.  You are so very outgoing, and you have the kind of magnetic personality that people are drawn to.  You never cease to amaze me.  You make me laugh whenever we are together.  

You have been so many things to so many people: daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin, aunt, sister-in-law, friend, fiancée, manager; and today you take on new roles....bride, wife, daughter-in-law.  You have handled these roles with kindness, commitment and love, and I know as you will continue to do so now as you begin this new chapter of life.  It is an honor to be standing next to you today, and it is an honor to see you marry your best friend in the same dress that I married my best friend in 6 1/2 years ago. 

Katie and Brian, it is simply awesome to around the two of you together.  You demonstrate that "once in a lifetime" kind of love and friendship that is rare and beautiful.  You bring out the best in one another, and support and encourage one another. It is so exciting to think about what your future together holds (hopefully lots of cousins for my kids....I'm just sayin'....) and the many lives you will both continue to touch and uplift.  

There will be tough times, and it won't always be easy, but take a minute and look around this room.  Look at all of the family and friends that are here in this room, and think of those family and friends that are here with you in spirit today, including angel Grandmas and Grandpas.  We are all here for you, in both good times and in bad times, to support you along your journey, and encourage you when times do get tough.  First and foremost, you have God, you have one another, but always remember, you have all of us.  You are never, NEVER alone.  You are both so very, very loved, today and always. 

So if you'll raise your glasses, I think it is fitting to close with this Irish Wedding Blessing:  May God be with you and bless you.  May you see your children's children.  May you be poor in misfortunes and rich in blessings.  May you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.


To my baby sister, You Are a Good Mom.  You Are an Amazing Mom.  You Are an Incredible Mom.  I still THANK GOD that you are my sister, my children's aunt, and my niece's mom.  


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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

TSW?T: Twigs, Shavers and Other Assorted Ridiculousness

They Said What? Tuesday:  Volume 22

My 3-year-old daughter...

All of these are courtesy of my sister this week.  After she spent the afternoon with my daughter, she texted me these gems.  

"I should wear my hair twigs to school after Halloween, right?"
...And by twigs, she obviously means, wig.  

M:  "I'm so thirsty."
My Sister:  "I'll get you some water and then you need to have rest time."
M:  "I can only rest with apple juice water."
...That's my daughter...workin' the system already.  The best part is this is something my sister totally would have pulled at age 3.  They are the perfect match for each other!

If you haven't met my kids, I'm sure you think I'm making this stuff up.  If you've met my kids, you (sadly) know I'm not...

"My mom has the same boob you do.  I will have that boob when I'm big enough to use shavers."
...There is no explanation.  I have no idea where she comes up with this stuff.  That is just some of the craziness that pops out of my daughter's mouth, and the reason I live between constant states of fear and absolute hilarity.

My 5-year-old son...

"Mom, can you pause the book, please?"
...His way of telling me 'Mom, don't start reading the book until I find my toy bat and can crawl back up next to you in my bed.'  In all honesty, I guess his way was much faster...and funnier...win for him.  Trust me, he needs all the wins he can get after his 'b word' episode from last week.

No matter what they say, You Are a Good Mom.


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